With so much uncertainty in our world right now, things are going to change in the real estate market as well. I follow the trends in NY and CA, because normally things happen there before they begin to happen here in Florida. Recently one of the top agents in the country located in NYC was in the middle of negotiating a $17 million dollar deal that he and his seller had been working on for months. The buyer decided to pull out of the deal due to the coronavirus. Instead of taking that as the final answer, the agent and seller decided to give a $250,000 discount, but just for the rest of the day. The buyer took it.
New York City has been in a buyer’s market for a while, they have a surplus of inventory which is not our problem here in Orlando. Today, my buyer’s agent did a video tour of a property in College Park (social distancing at its finest). My buyer likes the home and is considering an offer. Before my team and I were even contacted for feedback about our showing, the seller reduced the price. It was only hours after the showing; why didn’t the seller have their agent ask if my buyers were interested before slashing the price? Uncertainty. I believe we will start seeing a shift toward a buyer’s market because of the current climate.
For buyers, maybe last month you’d be able to get $10,000 off a property you liked, but this month you could get $20,000 off. We’re seeing a shift in where the power is; it’s been with the sellers for a long time, the tables might be starting to turn. What’s more, interest rates continue to be low.
Keep in mind, right now if a seller’s house is on the market, they are serious about selling, and if buyers are looking, they are serious about buying. When unpredictability hits the real estate market, only the serious survive.
Let’s talk about social distancing
My team has put two new systems into place to keep buyers, sellers and Realtors safe. The Coronavirus is not a joke. There are also some industries, that unless mandated by the government, will not stop.
We have two questionnaires, one for buyers and one sellers. The goal in the questionnaires is two fold:
1. For buyers – we want to know if you or anyone attending a showing with you has recently traveled or been exposed to someone who has recently traveled. We are also asking listing agents if their sellers have recently traveled or if the sellers have a job that gives them a greater chance to be exposed to the coronavirus.
2. For sellers – we want to know if you’ve recently traveled and if you’re OK opening up your home to buyers, Realtors or inspectors who have recently traveled. If yes, we have sellers acknowledge the risks of the coronavirus. If no, we will put a 14 day distance between the last date of travel and the date of an approved showing.
It is my job as a Realtor to lead by example. What we are going through is unprecedented, not only in the real estate market, but for our entire world. My goal is to keep my team, my buyers and my sellers safe. The thing is, we are all dealing with the coronavirus no matter what industry we find ourself in.
Stay safe out there, Orlando.